My Body Is Covered in Rash – I Suspect Zika

Sitting in my room shortly after suspecting Zika.

I woke up with a rash covering my entire body. That’s never good in a foreign, third-world country.

I’ve heard of the risks of Zika. The CDC makes the risks clear when traveling to Latin American countries these days and it’s all over the news. Well when I woke up on my birthday with a strange rash covering my body, I had no idea what was in store. It was definitely not the way I wanted to spend my day.

At first I was convinced it was an allergic reaction. The rash was textbook for the kind of reaction to something and with all the foreign exposures that come from travel abroad, it seemed the most likely. After talking at length with my father, and researching symptoms and signs of zika, we determined between a very mild fever, aches in my joints, and now a rash, the chances of it being Zika were more likely than not. It all added up and pointed towards it. Despite the attempts to keep them at bay, like dousing my clothes in permethrin and wearing bug repellent, it seems possible this is the case. In the last three weeks I’ve been in three hot spot areas for Zika. These areas include, Miami, Guyana, and Suriname. The virus runs wild in Latin America so it makes sense after three weeks of travel in these areas, it’s my turn.

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I’ll have to get tested soon to confirm it. It usually doesn’t show in your blood until about 10 days after symptoms occur. Your body needs time to build up the antibodies in order to show on a test. I’ll be going to the doctor soon to see what the deal is and either confirm or deny that’s the case.

The main cause of concern in Zika is actually amongst sexually active people, due to the risks of microcephaly in newborns. This birth defect causes serious health issues in an infant and is nothing to trifle with. The CDC advises those trying to have a baby to wait 6 months – not really a problem for me.

At this point the main concern for me is continuing traveling with this sickness. Symptoms vary from person to person so there’s no telling what kind of turn this will take. In vey few cases, the illness is lethal.

So do I go home? Do I rush back to America to seek first world healthcare? Should I continue going? My thoughts right now are not to worry.

I serve a God who told nothing to do something… and it did it.

With this kind of authority reigning in my life I know nothing will happen to me unless God allows it. We live in a fallen world and although sickness is not God’s fault, He has the authority over it. I consider Job from the Bible, who was afflicted with sores from the sole of his foot to the crown of his head (Job 2:7). It must have been trying times for Job that I can’t even imagine, but Job was obedient and faithful, as will I be.

Either way God has called me to a purpose and until I hear otherwise I will continue doing what God has called me to.


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7 Comments

  • Troy McGahan says:

    I love you Josh!!!! Praying for you

  • Kim tillman says:

    I don’t know you but I love your heart! God bless and Central Baptist Church in Argo, Alabama will have you on their prayer list! Get well, be safe, and shout God’s glory!!

  • Misty Richmond says:

    Praying for you Josh. Love you & hope things get better for you real soon.

  • Angie and Austin says:

    We are praying for you Josh, Love you buddy ! We miss ya!

  • Scarlett Waite says:

    Thank you for being a believer who leans into what God has planned, and for being faithful. I say thank you as someone who is learning to lean into who God is and what He has for me- to be faithful. Thank you for the encouragement, and reminder of God’s greatness, that your posts give. May God heal you, and may you see many blessings.

  • Tom Sipling says:

    Praying Josh! God does have this! Great time for intimacy with Him. Much love, Tom

  • Katherine Citak says:

    I got a very similar rash and symptoms while in Haiti.
    A doctor that specializes in travel medicine in Kentucky later told me that there are a few rash and joint pain causing viruses that are carried by mosquitoes. There’s Zika, chikungunya, and dengue. I think I had chikungunya as it was quite mild and the joint pain, rash, and other symptoms only lasted about a week. Zika is normally characterized with conjunctivitis and dengue with pain behind the eyes. I’m sure any travel clinic would have some answers, but here is Dr. Rebecca Shadowen’s clinic number if it helps at all +1(270) 780-2760. She works in the Bowling Green Medical Center.
    Hopefully you feel better soon and can continue the Lord’s work! Praying for you!

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